Bringing together the work of Lydia Needle and 50 artists who have each produced a creative response to the ecology of individual British bees for FIFTY BEES 5.
FIFTY BEES began in 2017 and creates a unique narrative between diverse works and artists with an aim to make explicit the link between pollinators and our ecosystem.
The Bombus Cullumanus was last seen in the UK in 1941, making it one of two species that have likely gone extinct from the UK in the last 80 years. It can still be found in Russia and Asia. The piece draws its form from the nests Bombus Cullumanus make underground, in abandoned borrows of rodents. A circular, linear, structure echoes the form of these cavities. The linear structure, which at its base has the suggestion of shadows. These etched and pierced panels, in turn create shadows themselves. The shadow reference (the temporary nature of shadows ) and the skeletal qualities of the linear structure have be used to hint at the decline of the species. Details about the bee, its preferred flowers, who discovered and its colouring have been etched and pierced into permanent shadows while the colouring of the piece is taken from the striking red tails of the female.